Yogyakarta and its Surroundings

Completed in around 856, Prambanan is the biggest and one of the most beautiful ancient Hindu temple complexes in South East Asia. Located about 15 kilometres from Yogyakarta on the Prambanan plains, and built by the Mataram Kingdom but abandoned by them in the 10th Century, there were originally some 250 small and large temples, many of which collapsed in an earthquake in the 16th century, leaving the temples largely forgotten in the jungle for many centuries until restoration began in the 1930s. The central compound of the Prambanan Temple Complex consists of eight large temples along with eight smaller ones on a square elevated platform surrounded by a wall with gates corresponding to each of the four cardinal points. There are three main inner shrines (the “Trimurti Temple”) of which the largest is the masterpiece dedicated to Lord Shiva and known as Loro Jonggrang (meaning Slender Maiden).

Ratu Boko.

Ratu Boko (associated with the legendary King Boko) is a few kilometres from Prambanan and situated on a hilltop that offers a view of Prambanan against a backdrop of the volcanic Mount Merapi. As an archaeological site it appears to comprise an ancient royal palace complex, similar in architectural layout with other Kratons or palaces in Java, together with Hindu and Buddhist architectural temple elements and indications that it also may have served to contain a Buddhist monastery.

The Kraton is a huge residential complex that has served as the residence of the Sultans of Yogyakarta for some 250 years.  The complex includes royal palaces and also houses for the ruler’s attendants and servants.  Such is the size of the complex that it is often called a “city within a city” and it includes the following features:

Kraton Yogyakarta:  This main palace is divided into the Main Court and the residential area and includes various displays which give a sense of the majestic lifestyle of the royal family over the generations.  The palace is open to the public from 9 am to 3 pm.

Taman Sari:  Also known as the water castle, and now partly ruined, Taman Sari was originally a pleasure garden that was built by the first Sultan of Yogyakarta and boasts a number of beautiful bathing pools and architectural features.

Sultan’s Carriage Museum:  The Museum displays the Sultan’s horse-drawn carriages including two special golden carriages imported from the Netherlands.

Yogyakarta is also famous for its batik cloth handicraft, traditionally made by drawing designs on cotton or silk and then hand-dying them using hot wax that resists dyes.  Patterns are handed down through the generations and Indonesian batik, which UNESCO recognised as intangible cultural heritage in 2009, has an important place in Indonesian culture.

Borobudur, or Barabudur, is a 9th-century Mahayana Buddhist Temple in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia. The monument consists of six square platforms topped by three circular platforms, and is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues. A main dome, located at the center of the top platform, is surrounded by 72 Buddha statues seated inside a perforated stupa.

Built in the 9th century during the reign of the Sailendra Dynasty, the temple’s design in Gupta architecture reflects India's influence on the region,Borobudur templr cleary shows india's impact.It also depicts the gupta style from india and shows influence of buddhism as well aa hinduism. The monument is both a shrine to the Lord Buddha and a place for Buddhist pilgrimage. The journey for pilgrims begins at the base of the monument and follows a path around the monument and ascends to the top through three levels symbolic of Buddhist cosmology: Kāmadhātu (the world of desire), Rupadhatu (the world of forms) and Arupadhatu (the world of formlessness). The monument guides pilgrims through an extensive system of stairways and corridors with 1,460 narrative relief panels on the walls and the balustrades.

Evidence suggest Borobudur was constructed in the 9th century and abandoned following the 14th century decline of Hindu kingdoms in Java, and the Javanese conversion to Islam. Worldwide knowledge of its existence was sparked in 1814 by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, then the British ruler of Java, who was advised of its location by native Indonesians. Borobudur has since been preserved through several restorations. The largest restoration project was undertaken between 1975 and 1982 by the Indonesian government and UNESCO, following which the monument was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Borobudur is still used for pilgrimage; once a year Buddhists in Indonesia celebrate Vesak at the monument, and Borobudur is Indonesia's single most visited tourist attraction.

Imogiri (also Imagiri) is a royal graveyard complex in Yogyakarta, in south-central Java, Indonesia, as well as a modern village located near the graveyard in Bantul regency. Imogiri is a traditional resting place for the royalty of central Java, including many rulers of the Sultanate of Mataram and of the current houses of Surakarta and Yogyakarta Sultanate. The name Imagiri is derived from Sanskrit Himagiri, which means 'mountain of snow'. The latter is another name for Himalaya.
The Royal Graveyard that preceded was Kota Gede. The graveyard was constructed by Sultan Agung of Mataram in the later years of his reign, probably in the 1640s.

The graveyard is a significant pilgrimage ziarah site, particularly on significant dates in the Javanese calendar (such as Satu Suro, New Year's Day), and the Islamic calendar.

It also belongs to a larger network of significant locations in Javanese pilgrimage traditions. It is possibly the only major location remaining in Java where the Palaces of Surakarta and Yogyakarta have personnel manning a jointly administered royal graveyard.

Among the site's most prominent graves are that of early Mataram ruler Sultan Agung , and Sultan of Yogyakarta Hamengkubuwono IX, a leader during Indonesia's war for independence. The most recent is that of Pakubuwana XII of Surakarta who was buried in 2004.